MINSK, Aug. 23 (BelTA) — The ability of the digital import substitution platform of the Belarusian Universal Commodity Exchange (BUCE) to offset the negative consequences of sanctions-fueled pressure, diversify exports and intensifying cooperation in the field of manufacturing was presented at the annual conference International Business Days forum in Ryazan Oblast for the first time. The forum takes place in the Russian city of Ryazan on August 23 and 24 and is considered one of the most significant and important events in the economic life of the region, said Roman Yaniv, press officer of BUCE, at BelTA.

First Deputy Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Universal Commodity Exchange of Belarus, Eduard Belsky, noted during the plenary session of the forum that although the import substitution platform of BUCE was launched less than three months, it has already become a daily tool for many Belarusian companies. Also, Russian companies have been increasingly active lately. They use the platform to provide import substitutes to Belarus and also act as buyers.

The universal nature of the platform allows it to be used to purchase substitutes for the materials, equipment and components affected by the sanctions and to expand the geography of sales of its own products since nearly 6,000 non-residents from 69 countries are accredited as traders through the Universal Commodity Exchange of Belarus. It is likely that representatives of the Russian private sector will be attracted there. For them, the Belarusian Universal Commodity Exchange provides an additional sales channel and an additional method of insuring against foreign trade risks. It is manifested by a steady growth in the number and volume of transit transactions. Russia is a leader among other foreign participants in this regard, said Eduard Belsky.

Agribusiness can become another potential area for increasing trade between Belarus and Ryazan Oblast. According to the representative of BUCE, both parties have something to offer in this regard.

Wet blue hides and a number of other agricultural products are already sold to Ryazan Oblast through the Universal Commodity Exchange of Belarus. Given the colossal export capacities of the Belarusian agri-food sector, the choice of products should be definitely expanded, noted Eduard Belsky. For example, Belarus could sell cheese, butter and other dairy products. In turn, Russian agricultural producers could supply Belarusian companies with seeds of oil and grain crops. The Belarusian Universal Commodity Exchange handles much of the trade in these seeds. “In other words, let’s look for touchpoints and interact,” the executive said.

The public joint-stock company (OAO) Belarusian Universal Commodity Exchange was established in 2004. The first trading sessions took place in June 2005. BUCE is one of the largest commodity exchanges in Eastern Europe. Its main function is to help Belarusian companies to export their products and to help foreign companies to enter the Belarusian market. The Commodity Exchange facilitates trade in metals, timber, agricultural products and a wide selection of industrial and consumer goods.